Jean M Auel Earth's Children Series - Book 6, The Land of Painted Caves, Available At Last!
The Series of Earth's Children Books
The Earth's Children series of books by Jean M Auel has been hugely popular over the last 30 or so years since the first book was released and Auel has managed to get at least 2 generations of readers into this series about Ayla and Jondalar's adventures in a fictional neolithic era.
So now at last the final book in the series is available (this is book 6) after a wait of 10 years and Jean M Auel has confirmed that this is the last book. All good things must come to an end and sometimes, a bit like TV series, things need to be brought to a conclusion so that the risk of losing the audience does not occur and the books are remembered fondly.
Clan of the Cave Bear
Jean M Auel's Earth's Children series of books kicked off in 1980 with the hugely popular 'Clan of The Cave Bear'. I first picked up this book on a backpacking trip to Australia in the early 1990's and from then onwards I was hooked. After I finished each book I would head over to the nearest second hand bookshop where you could swap old books for new and pick up the next installment.
The Clan of the Cave bear was theoretically set around 30,000 years ago and was a story about a young girl who was rescued by a group of what turned out to be neolithic types and reared by them. It was really the human aspect of the story and the great story-telling that caught my attention at the time and I was glued to the series of books.
The first book in the series, has sold millions of copies worldwide
The second book in the Earth's Children series
The third book in the series
The fourth book in the series
The 5th book, after a long gap and my least favourite
The next books in the series, The Valley of Horses (1982), The Mammoth Hunters (1985) and The Plains of Passage (1990) followed at reasonable intervals with Jean M Auel obviously doing lots more research for the books. These books followed the story of Ayla and Jondolar and their travels, trials, and tribulations. I was captured by all of these books although I wouldn't normally choose this genre of books to read myself - I was more used to crime fiction and autobiographies.
In the book 'The Plains of Passage' was a note that the author was researching her next book in the series and I was itching to get hold of that book for years. However, it took a full 12 years for the book to be released which it was in 2002. However, I have to say for me that the 5th book 'The Shelters of Stone' was a bit of a disappointment for me as it seemed to be way too descriptive and too involved in the minutiae of everything that was happening perhaps in a way to string out the book and so I did find it a bit tedious and a hard slog to get through.
However, as the 6th book, 'The Land of Painted Caves' has been confirmed as the last book in the series, I feel somewhat obliged to read it, just to finish the story in my own mind.
The Land of Painted Caves - Available to Order
So now the land of Painted Caves is available to order and I will indeed be ordering my copy so that I can see read the final chapter on Ayla and Jondalar's adventure. Even though the 5th book was a bit of a disappointment to me I think that maybe there is always a least favourite book in a series so I shouldn't judge this one by the quality of the last book.
If you enjoy a good read of any type then I would recommend the Earth's Children series - take your time and start with the first one would be my advice.
If You Are In The UK
If you live in the UK you can also get hold of the book from Amazon - here it is, The Land of Painted Caves.